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Capital Challenge Daily Update: Talking Trash

Stephanie Bulger was hand-grazing her horse at a show when she was struck by how much trash littered the ground and, later, by how many plastic water bottles could be found sitting un

claimed by the in-gates. “I realized there were no recycling bins any where and very few garbage cans,” said Bulger, an amateur equestrian who was quick to jump into action.

Following a year of careful research and planning, Green Is the New Blue was born in June of 2019, and today, the 501(c)(3) non-profit is dedicated to educating and inspiring equestrians of all levels and disciplines to live clean and green. This year, the Capital Challenge Horse Show is proud to join with the organization as an official “Green Partner.” As a partner, the show has pledged to “refuse to use” single-use plastic at the show in-gates. Instead, exhibitors will find eight-ounce Boxed Water Is Better, supplied by Green Is the New Blue and readily available in coolers by each show ring.

“It’s so important to not just recycle but to reduce the need for recycling,” explained R. Scot Evans, the creative director for Green Is the New Blue. “The chilling facts are real! There are 8 trillion pieces of single-use plastic currently in the oceans around the world. “It’s no longer about just picking up a piece of plastic and recycling it, it’s about refusing to use it,” continued Evans, who explained that many plastic bottles never actually get recycled, even if placed into recycling bins.

By partnering with horse shows such as Capital Challenge, Green is the New Blue is able to not only educate others on green practices, they are able to provide what is needed to put those practices into action at equestrian facilities across the country. “We’re providing ways to take action and the tools that are needed to do so,” said Evans.

In addition to the boxed waters and plastic-free in-gates, the horse show has also implemented Green Is the New Blue’s ribbon recycling program. The program encourages exhibitors who do not wish to keep their ribbons to place them in ribbon recycling bins so that they may be reused for future shows, rather than thrown into the trash.

“Our hope is that we can bring into everyone’s focus what they can do at the horse shows that can then lead back to the stable,” concluded Evans. “That in turn can lead back to what they do in their home life.”

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